By BRYAN ANDERSON
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) North Carolina senators approved a bill on Thursday to bar women from getting abortions on the basis of race, sex or a prenatal diagnosis of Down syndrome.
With the Senates party-line vote, the prohibition Republicans are seeking now heads to Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper, who is likely to veto it, having rejected previous anti-abortion restrictions.
Abortion rights groups say the GOP-led bill, which was universally opposed by Senate Democrats and supported by only six Democratic House lawmakers, would prevent women from having open conversations with their doctors and deny their constitutional right to an abortion.
Abortions on the basis of sex selection are already prohibited in North Carolina. House Bill 453, approved in the Senate by a vote of 27-20, would expand and strengthen the existing law by requiring physicians to report, with a signed confirmation, that an abortion was not desired due to sex, race or the likelihood of being born with Down syndrome.
FILE – In this May 27, 2021 file photo, North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper speaks to the gathered media after his tour of a COVID-19 vaccine clinic at the Pine Hall Brick plant in Madison, N.C. North Carolina’s Senate approved a measure on Thursday, June 10, to prohibit doctors from performing abortions if a woman is seeking it because of race, sex or a prenatal diagnosis of Down syndrome. (Woody Marshall/News & Record via AP, File)